Conversation with my friends and family this time of year goes something like this:
Friend: Well, I have to admit, the Tour de France is more interesting than I thought it would be.
Me: Are you KIDDING me? It’s ASTOUNDING! These guys grind away on their bicycles for five or six hours a DAY, for three solid WEEKS, over the biggest MOUNTAINS in Europe, in 90-degree HEAT! They don’t take breaks except to jump off and pee once in a blue moon! I complain when I have to sit in my office chair for a couple hours straight – can you imagine sitting on a hard sliver of a bicycle saddle ALL DAY and having to push your legs that entire time? There’s brutal competition, in-fighting, mind games, some team director yelling in their earpiece, constant eating and hydrating while riding – and then comes the hard part, the endless suffering up the mountains! Then, when they’re through for the day – for the 17th day in a row, let’s say – two tons of FANS want autographs and the media stick MICROPHONES AND CAMERAS in their faces and expect them to be friendly, intelligent and forthcoming!! And a lot of them ARE!!!! It’s unbelievable, it’s the most impressive, scenic, elegant, old-world sport in the WHOLE UNIVERSE!!!
Friend: [Eyes have rolled back in sockets…] Yeah, I’ll have to tune in… maybe next year…